Phil Wahl's [aka Brick Wahl's aka Phil Nelligan Wahl's]
writings page

These are all links to some of the stuff I've written. (Of course it's under construction but I'll be damned if I'll put one of those little guys with a shovel on this page...) A lot of this stuff has shown up on other sites. I've posted links to most. Hopefully I'll add photos and stuff as we go on.


Yeah I know these are all music pieces. Hopefully I'll broaden my perspectives in middle age...

Lexington "Wisconsin Death Trip"

Yes I did write this under the influence of marijuana. But I was young and didn't know any better. But what a band.... This appeared in an album insert.


A band that includes, among others, Dez Cadena of Black Flag and George Hurley of the Minutemen/Firehose--this originally was in St. Paul's Squealer 'zine (both web and newsprint editions).

Wild Stares

By the time this piece got close to being finished the long-running Stares were avant-weirdo rock history. It will finally appear in the Perfect Sound webzine real soon.

Sandy Duncan's Eye

A great noisy punk damage outfit, this article appeared in Fiz magazine in 1993. The band, of course, immediately broke up....

Sympathy For The Record Industry

Long Gone John called this his favorite piece on his label; it appeared in the once promising Noiseworks 'zine (out of D.C.) back in 1992.


There's a bunch more stuff to put in here as I transcribe it.

Nojoqui Falls

A short travel piece about a little sidetrip on the way to Monterey.


There's some more stuff to put here, as well as some "in-progress". That's a nice way of saying you're too lazy to finish the damn thing.

The Hamburger

A quickie response to the Story Teller's Challenge website to write a piece involving a grand piano, Chicago's John Hancock Center, and a hamburger. It was selected for their "Treasure Chest".

The Parade

Written for a writing class in the early '80's, this is a paean to street fighting and mob rule, inspired by the L.A. Street Scene punk rock riots. It appeared this year in the Assorted Realities webzine.


Big guys like me aren't supposed to write delicate little sensitive poetry things. I mean really. But I wrote one to enter a contest. I lost. Since then I've written maybe five or six I like, and maybe another half dozen that suck (and you won't see). That's it. Just call me Joe Prolific.

Burning of the Downtown Library

Words break up and spill into the gutter, letters like grains of sand....

Impressions On the White House Lawn

What the hell was that there?

At the Intaglios Outside Blythe, CA

Nothing but air, meaningless air.


A hole is a hole which once wasn't.


An army of Persians walks into the wind--never, ever to be seen again.

Book Reviews from the "West Coast Review of Books" (1984-85)

Back in the mid-eighties I wrote reviews for this defunct magazine whose office happened to be around the corner from our little punk rock bungalow in Bukowski's old East Hollywood. (Personally I think Bukowski's stuff blows, but it impresses the foreigners....)

History and Things That Got Bumped In the Night

Autumn of Fury--Assassination of Sadat.

Casablanca Connection--He went there for the waters.

Heroic Mexico--The first great modern Revolution.

March of Folly--Barbara Tuchman just picks on everybody.

The Nicaragua Reader--Excellent collection of documents on the Revolution.

A Special Kind of Valor--Tough look at Marines in the Pacific by one who was there.

Politics, Paranoia, and Current Events

Alternatives--A pensive look from the American Left.

Congress & the Common Good--Good ideas rendered moot--how NOT to write a book.

Contract on America--Before they offed Diana, the Mob hit JFK.

Harold Washington--Chicago, alive and kickbacking.

Raising Hell--Investigative reporting how-to manual.

Waiting For An Army To Die--"Agent Orange-gate"

Hippie Memories and New Age Crap

Healing Energies of Music--Why Heavy Metal is bad for your plants.

The Pathless Way--An old hippie and John Muir.

The Exceptional

The Emperor: Downfall of an Autocrat--Amazing inside reporting about the end of Haile Selassie.

Seizing the Day--Strange little book takes us back to October 4, 1914 via the local news in the Chicago area papers.

Bios, liner notes, etc.

All kinds of miscellaneous stuff I've written over the years related to bands, etc.

The Grey Spikes

From a bio and press clippings sheet I did for this great band. Quotes taken and slightly altered from an old Flipside interview. Of course, they broke up immediately thereafter....

The Jakk

A pair of essays--the first was from their press kit. The second was a posthumous write-up for their tune on Trigon's "Auto Body Experience" comp CD. The Jakk had succeeded Lexington (q.v. under "Articles") who had changed their name from Lexington Devils, and now my brother is playing under that name again. Why does everything have to be so complicated?

Claw Hammer

This is from the Trouser Press Record Guide's website Bulletin Board. They had a very nice Claw Hammer entry, but I thought there was a paucity of information on the band's formative years.

Brick's 40th Birthday Bash

A rather gushing play-by-play.

Record reviews

Mostly of obscure historical interest, this is a collection of record reviews from the past ten years. Most were written in the late '80's and early '90's--the ante-Nirvanian era. This was pretty much the zenith of "indie" rock, the zenith of small labels and fiercely uncommercial music and the beginnings of the immense wave of singles--yes, that's a little seven inch vinyl record--that finally drowned the entire "scene" in mediocrity. Though now the end result appears to have been inevitable, at the time the future seemed to have no bounds in terms of creativity and sheer ballsiness. Not to mention fun. Then came "Teen Spirit" and the majors and Courtney's series of make-overs and it's all just a business after all. It all makes a lot more sense if you've read Stephen Jay Gould's Wonderful Life about the Cambrian Explosion and subsequent extinction. Just be thankful if you were there at Ground Zero. Always try to be at Ground Zero. Even if it means setting off the explosion yourself.

Catalog blurbs

The wife and I used to run a little indie record distributor and the first catalog was a blast--a deliberately purely xerox and cut and paste affair that was a labor of love. These are some of the entries. I wish I could put the entire mess on the web but it would eat up a lot of download time with all of those heavily shadowed xeroxed pics. Maybe later...[coming]

To complain, insult, threaten, make that clever aside, deliver an innuendo or two, maybe ply some vicious gossip or even the odd weather report --you can relay them to me